Aids Focus

Stealing ARVs for whoonga 'is murder'

2011-01-19 14:20

Special Report

Johannesburg - Stealing antiretrovirals (ARVs) is murder, the National Association of People Living with HIV and Aids (Napwa) said on Wednesday.

"The lives of many people who are HIV positive depend on ARVs. Therefore those people who are selling ARVs... for recreational use are killing innocent people," Napwa secretary general Nkululeko Nxesi said.

His comments follow the arrest of Moses Dladla, 41, and Johannes Mahlangu, 44, in Olifantsfontein last Thursday.

They appeared in the Kempton Park Magistrate's Court on Monday after allegedly being found with stolen ARVs worth R200 000.

Dladla and Mahlangu implicated a third man, 48-year-old Busami Chauke, who was initially arrested for possession of dagga in Norkem Park, but later implicated in the ARV case.


They were found in possession of Viread (an ARV drug) and two plastic bags each carrying about 20 batches of ARVs. Their arrest was the result of a tip-off from a member of the public.

Police believed the men stole the ARVs to make an illegal drug known as "whoonga", a concoction of Stocrin (an ARV drug), dagga, sore throat medication Strepsils and rat poison.

The case was postponed to March 25 for further investigation. They face charges of possession of stolen property.

Nxesi called for better security in the public health system.

The Treatment Action Campaign on Monday said people who stole antiretrovirals were "very cruel".

"Stealing them is robbing people of their right to health care and life," spokesperson Caroline Nenguke said.


Read more on:    hiv aids  |  narcotics

Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24

  • Thursday Sir Lowry's Pass - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Old Sir Lowrys Pass Road
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Bezweni Road
  • Thursday Cape Town - 05:35 AM
    Road name: Buitengracht Street
    TRAFFIC LIGHTS not working at Waterkant Street
More traffic reports...

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now! - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

BlackBerry Bold Touch 9900

The Blackberry Bold Touch 9900 is as the name says...

From R3565.00

I'm shopping for:


You may be required to travel or get information for your job. This may be restricting in some way or something may slow more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.